Apparently, Pat Leahy is a little more intimidating than David Paterson—at least as far as Kirsten Gillibrand is concerned.
Recall that back in January, at the formal announcement of her appointment to the Senate, Paterson tried in vain to get Gillibrand to finish her rambling, unfocused opening statement. “Shall I finish?” she asked at one point, only to quickly answer her own question: “I’ll finish.”
Six months into her tenure, Gillibrand remains long-winded—so much so that Leahy, the chairman of the Judiciary Committee, just interrupted her formal introduction of Sonia Sotomayor at the committee’s confirmation hearings.
“Senator,” Leahy said, “we’re going to have to put your full statement in the record so that Judge Sotomayor can be heard.”
Surprised, Gillibrand shot back: “May I conclude my remarks?”
“Uh … if it can be done in the next few seconds …”
There was some chuckling in the room, but none from Leahy, who sighed, leaned back in his seat, and folded his arms. Gillibrand didn’t push her luck any further, though, and simply called Sotomayor “one of the finest jurists in American history” and left it at that.